The inimitable Tinie Tempah shot to prominence in 2010 when his debut single ‘Pass Out’ hit #1. More huge crossover hits followed in the shape of his second #1 and Stateside breakthrough track ‘Written in the Stars’, as well as ‘Frisky’, ‘Miami 2 Ibiza’, ‘Invincible’ and ‘Wonderman’ – all of which featured on his debut album ‘Disc-Overy’ which went straight to #1. Numerous awards followed, including Best Breakthrough Act and Best Single at the BRITs; Best Newcomer at the MOBOs and an Ivor Novello for Best Contemporary Song- all of which underlined his status as one of the most important artists of his generation.
For his second album, 2013’s ‘Demonstration’, Tinie decided to return to his roots, recording the entire album in the same Greenwich studio he’d made street hits like ‘Wifey’ and ‘Tears’. He also refused to settle for anything less than perfection; he had songs re-produced, re-mixed and re-vocaled numerous times until he was 100% certain they were perfect. He also enlisted Manny Marroquin, engineer for everyone from Tupac to Kanye and Usher, as well as collaborations including Dizzee Rascal, Tom Rowland of The Chemical Brothers, Naughty Boy, Emeli Sandé, Paloma Faith, Laura Mvula, 2 Chainz and John Martin.
After the release of ‘Demonstration’, Tinie once again hitting the upper reaches of the charts with crossover singles such as ‘Trampoline’ and ‘Children of the Sun’, Tinie’s guest features extended with two more #1 smashes with Cheryl Cole’s ‘Crazy Stupid Love’ and DVBBS & Borgeous’s ‘Tsunami (Jump)’.
As a prominent figure in British fashion, Tinie was named Best Dressed Man in GQ’s Men of the Year Awards 2012, and in 2013 was selected as the ambassador for the London Menswear Collection. More recently Tinie featured in the BBC arts series Private View in which he examined Alexander McQueen’s Savage Beauty costume exhibition.
As well as famously high-fivin’ none other than Prince William at 2014’s BAFTAs, Tinie’s highest profile live shows have included the closing ceremony of the Olympics; every major festival from Coachella to Glastonbury; as well as supporting the likes of Jay-Z, Usher and Rihanna. His most recent UK arena tour included a triumphant homecoming show at London’s O2 Arena.
Tinie Tempah made a sensational return last summer with the release of ‘Not Letting Go’, his first new track since the release of ‘Demonstration’. ‘Not Letting Go’. Contrasting Tinie’s charismatic flow with a soaring pop hook courtesy of Jess Glynne, it became Tinie’s 6th UK number 1. He quickly followed this up by guesting on KDA’s ‘Turn The Music Louder (Rumble)’ together with Katy B. His inimitable party rousing style on this club banger helped deliver his 7th UK Number 1. Tinie has now had as many UK #1s as Michael Jackson, U2, Kylie, Robbie Williams and Elton John, and is the artist with the most UK # 1s this decade.
Tinie then concluded 2015 by revisited his underground roots on the ‘Junk Food’ mixtape. Released on the independent Disturbing London label, it featured guests including Giggs, Big Narstie, Stormzy and JME.
In April 2016, Tinie stormed back into the upper reaches of the charts with ‘Girls Like’ which features Swedish vocalist Zara Larsson and has since sold 500,000 copies. Together with a sold-out O2 Academy Brixton show, it proves that Tinie is on a high and back at the top of his game – something that he celebrated by reprising his renowned Disturbing Ibiza party at Ushuaïa Ibiza during residencies in June and September.
‘Girls Like’ was followed by ‘Mamacita’, a summer explosion of Latin rhythms and swinging salsa grooves which finds Tinie weaving his distinctive rhymes around a hook courtesy of guest artist Wizkid.
Tinie has spent the majority of 2016 writing and producing new material in his home studio. The result is that ‘YOUTH’ – set for release on January 27th – is an album that’s infused with ideas relating to its title, but also one that brims with the playful and uplifting aspects that fizzled throughout ‘Disc-Overy’. The album is already packed with hits in the shape of ‘Girls Like’, ‘Mamacita’, ‘Turn The Music Louder’ and ‘Not Letting Go’.
“I wanted to give a nod to all of the genres of music I heard growing up that made me want to be a rapper,” explains Tinie. “The good thing about being from London is that you hear so many different styles of music, and are exposed to so many different things. I wanted to make an album that felt nostalgic with elements of those big British sounds from different genres, whether that was garage, grime, hip-hop or R&B.”
Tinie concludes the year with a month-long European tour that calls at ten different countries – he already had a second run of dates lined up following the release of ‘YOUTH’.